Inside Big Bad Breakfast, Opening In The Former Lynn’s Paradise Cafe Building


Big Bad Breakfast, a new restaurant in the same spot once occupied by Lynn’s Paradise Cafe and more recently by Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint (984 Barret Ave.), will open tomorrow, Tuesday, Feb. 8. 

True to its name, the restaurant will serve breakfast and lunch dishes like avocado toast, French toast, breakfast crumble, Creole omelets, burgers, hot chicken sandwiches and pancakes. It’ll be open daily from 7 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

LEO took part in a media preview of the restaurant earlier today.

Chef John Currence, who has won several James Beard Awards, told reporters that he’s aware of the legacy that Lynn’s Paradise Cafe left and the responsibility his team has to preserve certain qualities of the “storied spot.”

“We’re not trying to be Lynn’s, but we want to tip our hat to it somehow,” he said. 

Although the decor at Big Bad Breakfast is, to put it mildly, more muted than Lynn’s, there are a few homages to the famed restaurant: a mural at the end of the building features the kettle and teacup that used to be part of the restaurant’s outdoor decor. A metal sculpture of a chicken is outside the front door, somewhat reminiscent of the colorful animal sculptures that “lived” around Lynn’s exterior. Inside the restaurant are plants that Currence says he and owner Steve Ritchie, the founder and CEO of Endeavor Restaurant Group and a native Louisvillian, chose as a reference to the tree at Lynn’s that hung baubles above diners’ heads.

Inside the restaurant is a mural of famous Louisvillians, including Muhammad Ali, Jennifer Lawrence, Hunter S. Thompson, Diane Sawyer and Secretariat.

This is the first Big Bad Breakfast location in Louisville, but one of nearly a dozen in the chain, although Currence says that the business tries to operate as "the anti-chain chain." Currence told reporters that he tries to localize each Big Bad Breakfast restaurant to its respective city; the Louisville location will serve a version of a Hot Brown. All of the restaurants in the Big Bad Breakfast chain are located in the South. (A sign above the door says, “Thank y’all for coming!”)

Check out a photo walkthrough of the space and a preview of many of the dishes in this slideshow.

02/07/2022 | Photos by Carolyn Brown • [email protected] • @cebrownphoto